5 Really Expensive Olympic Games
Sochi has been in the news a lot recently, and not in a good way. Countries that host the Olympics do it for the fame and prestige that comes with the athletes and media attention. Unfortunately for Russia, so far, Sochi is causing worldwide disgust over poor conditions that the athletes, journalists, and other guests of the games are facing.
People are left wondering how the games can be costing roughly $50 billion when there seems to be little show for the astronomical tab. Despite Russia’s incredible spending habits resulting in the most expensive Olympic games ever, the event is never really an affordable venture. Since the start of the modern Olympics in 1896 in Athens, which cost 740,000 drachmas (approximately $448,000), many host countries have amassed huge debts, most of which fall on taxpayers. Here is a list of some of the most expensive Olympic games in history.
As expensive as $50 billion sounds, $40 billion doesn’t seem much cheaper. The 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing cost roughly that much, although the country was able to escape the drowning debt that many other host countries have faced. As of 2012, China was still benefiting from the Olympics, with the majority of the facilities still being used. The Olympics also modernized much of the city, including roads, telecoms, and subway lines. Tourism also remains steady thanks to the success of the games — the city tried hard to reinvent its image and seems to have succeeded in many ways. Of course, not all changes have been positive. The modernization of Beijing has displaced many people, and pollution remains high.